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Japan successfully launches next-generation H3 rocket after failure last year

17/2/2024 12:24
        Japan successfully launched its new H3 flagship rocket on Saturday, putting its satellite programme back on track after multiple setbacks including the failure of the rocket's inaugural flight last year.
        
        The launch also marks a second straight win for the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) after its moon lander, SLIM, achieved a "pinpoint" touchdown last month.
        
        A relatively small player in space by number of launches, Japan is seeking to revitalise its programme as it partners with ally the United States to counter China.
        
        The H3 had a "successful liftoff" at 9:22 a.m. Tokyo time (0022 GMT) and was "on course" with its engines properly working, JAXA said in a live broadcast that showed scientists clapping and hugging each other at the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan.
        
        All its payloads - two microsatellites and a dummy satellite - were successfully released, the agency later said.
        



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